When I Was the Forest There Was Nothing I Could Not Love @ Rubicon ARI 6- 23 November 2019

Bodies, trauma, instinct, nature, affect, cycles, patterns, bacterial intelligence, love and symbiosis. I work to reconcile my complex history with my environment. These banners are love poems between body and Country. Some are intimate poems of bodies reclaiming their animism via symbiosis with nature, and larger body/land sized works using sensorimotor mark making while deeply listening to Country. I try to be receptive to my carnal relationship with my environment, our mutualism, our history, and the slow process of reconciling our union. 

Karla Pringle lives and works on Kabi Kabi/ Gubbi Gubbi County and acknowledges and pays love and respect to elders past, present and emerging. 

When I was the Forest there was nothing I could not love, 2019, digital print on 100% silk
Waterfall of bones, surrender, this is where you will be born, 2019, digital print on 100% silk

Floating Land 2019

Analogue Environmental Sound Synthesiser, synthesising the sounds of the Human vascular system (heart) with the sounds of the environment. ❤️

A ceremonial platform providing an analogue prosthetic for listening at the lake – a kind of environmental sound synthesiser. Participants are invited to enter a collaborative and immersive bodily synthesis with the environment.

The Analogue Environmental Sound Synthesiser sculpture acts as mediator between environmental spatial sounds and the individual human biome. It amplifies and brings into consciousness the biophony (which includes human and more than human sounds) connecting spaces in between points of the body and the landscape.

This sculpture was commissioned by Noosa Regional Gallery as a part of Floating Land,

Floating Land: point to point marks the 10th iteration of one of Noosa’s most significant and iconic cultural events. Conceived in 2001 as a biennial outdoor sculptural program, Floating Land: point to point will have a presence across two key anchor sites in 2019 – Boreen Point and Noosa National Park.
From the serene shores of Lake Cootharaba at Boreen Point to the rocky outcrops of Noosa National Park – and several spaces in between – visitors will be invited to experience thoughtful, challenging and environmentally aware works that engage sensitively with these special and spectacular spaces. www.floatingland.org.au

Where the Waves Begin

Nessun Posto @ Trocadero Art Space

Tamara Baillie, Camila Galaz, Karla Pringle, Siying Zhou

Curated by Andrée Ruggeri 

Project Space: August 7  – August 24

Artist Talk: Saturday August 17, 2pm

An undefined position of inquiry, inhabited by some, from which investigations of identity, intergenerational memory, language and place emerge.

These artists navigate from complex personal, geographical, and cultural vantage points, sitting somewhere along a liminal-liminoid continuum. Connecting with inherited experiences, or challenging what these might look like, the works in this exhibition explore associated traumas, gaps, and languages. Forgotten, welcomed, uninvited, translated.


Karla Pringe, Where the waves begin, 2019, Eco dye on silk satin, carved, burnt and stained tenugui

With a nod to tasseography, ritualistic marks are collated and printed on silk, hung from a carved, burnt tenugui stained with blood, holy water, weed pigment, and ink. I draw with both hands, simultaneously focusing on my pelvic area as an exercise in integration and body awareness. I’ve had to learn to walk again and my pelvis, like the land it stands on is a contested site holding trauma. As I work, untold histories unfold, silences end, alternative records emerge, and I see why I was made to believe I come from ‘no place’.

Tamara Baillie, Identity, 2019, sugar, lace, wood, paint 

My work frequently questions our history and seeks to include alternative perspectives that counteract our collective ‘forgetfulness’. The rhetoric of ‘exploration’, ‘discovery’ and ‘settlement’ obscures the complex and nuanced interactions between settler and Indigenous cultures that are inescapably entwined and continue to influence our sense of identity today. 

Taking as a starting point my own explorations of elusive familial and cultural histories that include both whispers of indigenous ancestry and migrant frontier settlers, my practice often considers strategies for masking, concealment and control. This sugar-cured lacework considers some of this veiled history. Both painstakingly handcrafted object and protective layer obscuring traces of use, the doily acts as a mask, a firm reminder of the resolve to control.

Siying Zhou, Untitled (from To Master Your Mother Tongue), 2019, LED signs, video, gold metallic curtain. To be viewed from the street. 

In answer to the complex cultural and psychological site that is embodied in small businesses run by Footscray’s immigrants, this work explores the representation of the Other through external and internal gazes. On the one hand, these businesses present a clear division of culture and enhance a fixed definition; on the other hand, they project a complex and ambivalent line between the idea of ‘we’ and ‘they’. 

By creating new text on the shop signs and by alternating between the peace / V sign hand gesture in the video, a multilayered response emerges. For immigrants, selling products of the Other to mainstream society is a strategy of survival and integration, but also an activity of home-making. Similarly, mimicking or repeating the local tongue occurs as a method of assimilation, but also forms a means of resisting ‘them’ and protecting ‘us’ through the reinterpretation or repurposing of language. 

Camila Galaz, Reparar Means to Repair, 2018, video, 3:12

This work uses video and gesture to explore intergenerational rifts created by mass violence and the attempts to mend damage done – both governmental reparations and personal acts of repair and remembering. It considers the relationship between official narratives of reparation and the burden of personal healing through the frame of language and memory.


Tamara Baillie
 is Tarndanya/Adelaide-based artist who works primarily in sculpture and installation to explore personal and collective historical narratives. Playing with concepts of presence and absence, her practice is built around ongoing investigations into the convergence of memory and identity. http://www.tamarabaillie.com/

Camila Galaz lives and works in Melbourne. Her visual arts practice uses video, drawing, and installation to explore intimate connections to history and resistance. http://www.camilagalaz.com

Karla Pringle is an artist living and working on Kabi Kabi land. Her practice is heavily influenced by, and often refers to, the history of women’s body politics; mental health, domestic crafts, home-remedies and spiritualism, functioning as sites of slippage, subversion and rebellion.  https://karlapringle.com/

Siying Zhou is a China-born Australian artist whose practice is primarily research-based and project driven. Through creating a hybrid form of works, predominantly installations, Zhou provokes questions and draws discussions towards human issues, such as notions of self and the divisions and connections between people. http://www.siyingzhou.com/

Andrée Ruggeri is a sometimes curator living and working on Wurundjeri and Boonwurrung land. She is interested in unpacking narratives and experiences around cultural history and identity building.

Be/coming Home 2019
@ MailBox Gallery

*Kabi Kabi/Gubbi Gubbi Country is the land of my childhood. It’s rainforest Country bordered by mountains, rivers and ocean. In the 1880’s most of the Kabi Kabi/Gubbi Gubbi people were violently removed from the land where I now live. My ancestors also arrived here at this time. I was never made aware of my family’s involvement in this war. I never heard stories about it. It was not spoken of. There was a lot that was not spoken of. And I cannot speak for ghosts, but I can see patterns – patterns of intergenerational culture.

I grew up with violence in every form, and suppression, repression, and denial. The conquerors conquer their own. The land was powered over, owned, diminished, pillaged and controlled. My body was powered over, owned, diminished, pillaged and controlled. Frightened men fight until they die. I left, so I wouldn’t die fighting back.

Now I’ve returned. I am trying to reconcile the violence and disconnect of the past. I am trying to come to terms with the violence against the Kabi Kabi / Gubbi Gubbi, the land, and my own body. I try to understand and disable the violence and to be a witness to what has occurred, to my self and to others. So I listen. I listen to the Traditional Owners and their deep wisdom of and connection to Country, I listen to Country and its deep wisdom of and connection to people, and I listen to my body, its deep desire to be at peace within this place – to end the violence.

These drawings are made with a method of sensorimotor mark making. I use this method to connect with Country in a deeply immersive manner – to listen fully with my body. To let a conversation between my body’s sensory receptors and Country take place.

These are records of the deep reverence that can exist between bodies of land and flesh – petitions against the destruction of their unity. Love poems to Country, teaching me to come home, teaching me to become home.

*I would like to acknowledge that this work was made on Kabi Kabi/Gubbi Gubbi Country, and to pay my deep love and respect to its Elders past, present and future.


Home Spectres, Phantasmagoria, 2015-2017

Domestic detritus reformed as shimmering ghostly grotesqueries.

Otherworldly pursuits and spectres were a common form of entertainment and interest for the women of the spiritualist movement in the late 20th century. It’s quite possible these women were seeking freedom, excitement and power within unchartered interdimensional territories, as a response to living in a culture that gave them limited autonomy.  An ingenious act of rebellion and liberation- when faced with a society that responds to you as an invisible being- embody the monster- and it’s powers – Shazam!

From just before the birth of my son I’d been living with a complex disability which seemed to leave me as imperceivable as a phantom within many cultural situations. These spectral beauties became a great source of romp and pizazz and a means of escaping my bodily and cultural limitations. Similarly to the inter-world expeditions of the spiritualists at the turn of the century I was also given the opportunity to imagine and conjure another world.

Constructed with household leftovers and dross, light and water, these spectral time travellers evoked a potential gaseous freedom that was unfathomable to me at the time.


Monuments to Being, 2015 @ Tacit Gallery

These tableaus of daily gatherings are scattered with light from half filled bottles, photographed, printed and painted into – repeated, again and again and again. The layers of domestic ephemera are woven through physical and digital platforms, seasonal and binary meantimes and knitted into experiential tapestries.

In a world where the mind is King, these are altars to the Queen, to the senses, emotions, affect and fleeting feelings. They are tender shrines of reception, impression and intuition, celebrations of impermanence and the darkness and lightness of being


Wish. Listen, 2014

While trying to map the edges of my consciousness, I created a means of mimicking the experience of spaciousness I experienced while listening intently for the hypothetical ‘stone to drop’ at the bottom of the well of my brain. 🙂 These hand held cavities act like seashells and project the sounds of my internals back to me in an ongoing spatial sound loop. Coupled with ritualistic items they were intended to be a type of portable ceremonial interface for the evocation of spaciousness.


Celestial Blobbies, 2014 @ Yarra Gallery, Federation Square

Empty heads waggle their dust tongues – or the ladies from my sensory system manifest their marvellousness.

These bedazzled metamorphic blobs are amalgamations of residual memory, experiential debris, sentimental sediments and collapsed saturated meaning. They were excavated from my sensory field through a series of liminal, kinaesthetic, proprioceptive and psychological processes. To celebrate their arrival from limbo, the extracted amalgamates were reverse embalmed, cleansed, embellished and re-wilded within a mimicry of their former cognised environment or umwelt.


Domestic rituals, psychopomps, and home magic studies, 2013 – 2014

You say pompous psycho, I say psychopompos.

I’ve been reconstructing my unconscious space. I’m giving form to the hectic desires and thoughts that crowd my subconscious. I’m hoping to free up some room by gluing down these memories and musings in matter.

Why does this matter matter? I seem to be bumping into my senses all the time, everything is overloaded with meaning and therefore, messages. My nerves are shot, they send information to my brain- when there is no information to relay. Only imagined info, a surplus of simulacra stuffing up my stratosphere (See alliteration! -so much of the same, suffocating in its own meta mimicry).

Freud explains that when desire encounters a prohibition it cannot otherwise circumvent, it retreats to the unconscious, where it remains active but escapes detection.  The prohibition meanwhile remains “noisily conscious.” (Freud, Totem and Taboo, 30.) We are compelled to avoid certain acts and to repeat certain others, but we no longer understand why, until finally the burden of avoiding what we want to do dictates everything that we allow ourselves to do. Desire, however, is energy. As long as it’s held in “tension”, it seeks out every available means of discharge. So it takes the detour of the sign. Forbidden to satisfy itself directly, it turns its energies onto “substitute objects” and aims. 1

So I’m migrating, there is a war in my senses and I’m not only letting the boats of my unconscious in, I’m relocating them, giving them visas and building their churches. I could possibly build hundreds of cities with all these replications and parallel presents 2 I carry in my subliminal perceptions. But I’m not building it so they will come, I’m building it so I can see it, and hopefully not just bump into it, Like Mr Magoo.

 Psychopomps, Psychopompos (from the Greek word ψυχοπομπός – psuchopompos, literally meaning the “guide of souls”) In Jungian psychology, the psychopomp is a mediator between the unconscious and conscious realms. 3totem is a being, object, or symbol representing an animal or plant that serves as an emblem of a group of people, such as a familyclan, group, lineage, or tribe, reminding them of their ancestry (or mythic past). 4

  1.  Christopher Bracken, Magical Criticism, The recourse of Savage Philosophy 
  2. Amelia Barikin’s Parrallel Presents http://mitpress.mit.edu/books/parallel-presents-0 
  3. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychopomp 
  4.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Totem 

Mountains and Ghosts, 2012-2013

I was born in Beerwah, Glasshouse mountains QLD, and my Aunty lived right below Mount Coonowrin, (aka Crook Neck). As a kid it seemed as though my Aunty had this enormous mountain right in her backyard, it felt personal, the large crooked neck fella looking right over us, his face changing with the weather, the sun and the moon.  A timeless body watching our foolishness.

In times of chaos I still find the mountains very comforting. It’s something about scale and perspective. When I was a kid I’d mix up the scale and perspective, standing in my Aunties back yard covering the entire mountain with my hand.  The giant bowl of space between us seemed to disappear if I concentrated on the rock’s highest peak. I’d try to bring the mountain to me so I could forage through it’s tree covered ridges with my fingertips, discovering secret animal castles built where humans couldn’t see, or enchanted plants and tunnels to other worlds.


Link Farmer 2011 @ Fitzroy Library Gallery

This work was to be a self portrait based on a google search of your own name for a group show at the Fitzroy Town Library.

My name at the time had been harvested by a Russian Link Farm and was listed amongst millions of subjects linking to indecipherable sites. The link farm included everything from Canadian pharmaceuticals, porn and mining sites to homes wares, medical conditions and Christian Blogs and much more. Somehow my name had been swept up in this information whirlpool.

I liked this appropriation of myself, the site had no images only basic text links, but the words included on the page were rich and duplicitous. There were so many text links crammed into the one page that the site just became a blur of everything and nothing, akin to a black hole.

I felt I had been pointlessly gleaned and transformed into an aimless chimera of our collective conscience.

I couldn’t help myself, so many good words, I had to put some of them together…

The Link Farmer’s smile

Diamond sandwich tree.
Bursting with
Tiger, liger, mud volcano

Out of sea electric
pearl floating snakes
unsubscribe

Bizplace shaman in cuttle shells
Shackled seaweed Jesus keepsake
How long will I live?

home insurance halogen ghost
vs
cerulean manilla apartheid raptor
how do magnets work?

hand painted
wireless rainbow
colliding over
moon pill quilted mountain

current torrent sweeping
sand through veneer
spelling gold
is there anybody out there?

crocodile crystal child
chain smoking virus
personalised rosary code
link farming empty solaris

sex moon cancer dust
Heaven’s best carpet
earth moves myths shades aside
Quiz me for telekinesis


Dawn of R.A.M. 2009 @ Bus Gallery

We are in the future, the Chimpanzees, through some fault of humanity, are now the dominant species. They have a culture that is remarkably similar to humans at the end of the middle ages.  Museums and the exotic are particularly fashionable and the Chimpanzees have created museum-like environments to display discoveries from their recent geological endeavours.  The dawn of R.A.M. is a window onto a time from long ago, possibly around the late 20th century. There are no reliable records from this time, but there is a plethora of found materials.  The Chimpanzees have arranged these to the best of their knowledge in an attempt to reconstruct a long lost civilisation.


Monsters at the edge of the internet 2006- 2008

<MONSTERS LIE HERE; ROBOTS = “NOFOLLOW”>
 ARE THERE INFORMATION MONSTERS AT THE EDGES OF THE INTERNET?

The Internet is a vast network, whose scale, like that of the universe, is incomprehensible, sublime. As users and net-colonisers, we use search engines to charter our way around a nebulous environment. Even so, these are inadequate tools to expose the Internet’s entirety.

Corresponding to the Age of Exploration, the Age of Information provides us with untold mysteries. Like the cartography of the 15th century – where unknown areas of maps were marked with phrases such as imago mundi (imagined world) – there are areas of the Internet that are also un-mappable.  They often exist because their creators have incorrectly tagged them, or have tagged them(search engines crawling the site are asked to ignore these pages, not to display them, like a silent number).  These regions are the new terra incognita of our culture.I wish to assume the roll of an Internet privateer and set out to document the curiosities, mythology and monsters I find in the corners of our information ocean.  I hope to pull these monsters out of the depths of the electrical sea and watch them slap their salty grotesqueries on my living room carpet.  In documenting these wonders I want to pay homage to exploration and experiment in a metamorphism between physical and imagined space, traditional and digital reproduction.  The chronicle of my journey will be an amalgam of the digital and analog, of pixels and handmade marks, of code and compass roses, science fiction and sea shanties.


Glory Box, A meditation on consumption 2005 @ George Paton Gallery, Melbourne University


Uninhabitation, Vesuvius & Hall Ghosts, 2003 @ Abandoned site, Fitzroy


Various works from St Denis Decides to Forget and After no-place, early 2000’s